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MALLERY/THE STAIRWAY TO PLOT HEAVEN Susan Mallery www.susanmallery.com PLOT GROUP RULES All sessions will be double taped to avoid the unthinkable—a tape not working. We will all speak clearly and loudly so as to be heard on the tapes. We will all work really, really hard not to talk over anyone, as that means no one gets heard on the tape. We will all come with *something* about our story. Even just the barest hint of an idea. A germ. A "ge" -- something. The author of the hour is responsible for making sure she likes the direction we are going. If she does not, she needs to speak up as soon as possible to stop us. No matter how brilliant we think we are, we will respect that author's opinion and go in a different direction. Only the author of the hour can control the direction of the brainstorming. No idea is bad. We will never be critical of someone else’s idea. If we don’t agree, we can say something like “Or you could try…” If the session is going badly, we will rewind the tapes and start over. If it still is going badly, we will break and try again later. We respect each others ideas, meaning their ideas are theirs and theirs alone. However, if an author chooses not to use an idea, anyone interested in it may ask to use it. All idle chit chat, gossip, confessions and discussions are held in the highest degree of confidence. If anyone violates this rule and gossips about a plot group member outside of plot group, she will never be asked back—and the rest of us will make a point of saying rude things about her at every opportunity. This one is not a joke. We all put ourselves on the line at these sessions and we need to know we're in a safe environment. MALLERY/THE STAIRWAY TO PLOT HEAVEN Plotting Checklist Hero’s conflict: _______________________________________________ Hero’s goal: _________________________________________________ Heroine’s conflict: _____________________________________________ Heroine’s goal: _______________________________________________ Opening scene: _______________________________________________ First TP: _____________________________________________________ Second TP: __________________________________________________ Third TP: ____________________________________________________ Black Moment: ________________________________________________ Escalating Bad Stuff: ___________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ Scene Ideas: _________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________ MALLERY/THE STAIRWAY TO PLOT HEAVEN THE BAKERY SISTERS Sweet Talk, Sweet Spot, Sweet Trouble Susan Mallery The Bakery Sisters is a three book series about three sisters who own a bakery in Seattle. Book 1: At the age of three, Claire Keyes found a piano at a baby shower and began to play. As she’d never seen a piano before, this caused a stir. By the time Claire was six, she’d been declared a prodigy and she was off to New York with her maternal grandmother to study piano. As her grandmother’s health began to fail, Claire’s mother, decided to travel with her daughter, leaving her two younger daughters to be raised by their father. When Claire was sixteen, her mother was killed in a car accident in Prague. Claire was considered mature, so continued her education and touring on her own. By the time she was 20, she was known around the world. By the time she was 28, she lived in a one room apartment in New York, too stricken by panic attacks to ever perform in public. Nicole Keyes grew up responsible for her family. She barely remembers her older sister but she blames Claire for stealing her mother away and then killing her. While Claire grew up all over the world, living what Nicole saw as a glamorous life, Nicole grew up working in the bakery. With her mother gone, it was Nicole’s job to make sure Jessie, the baby of the family, stayed out of trouble. She knew how to take care of the world, but didn’t trust anyone enough to take care of her. Jessie grew up in the shadow of her sisters. She never knew Claire, but wished she could have traveled with her. While Nicole got attention by doing the right thing, Jessie knew she was born bad. In her heart, she wanted to belong, but she didn’t have a clue how to make that happen. In the book 1, Claire is called home by Jesse. Nicole has broken her leg and can’t run the business. Claire has no experience with business, but she’s willing to learn, despite her panic attacks. She’s also desperate to connect with the family she left behind. Nicole doesn’t want help, but with her leg, she has no choice. Slowly the two sisters reconnect, although Nicole refuses to have anything to do with Jessie because her baby sister slept with her husband. Claire meets Wyatt—a single father of a deaf child—and finds herself getting involved. Wyatt is attracted to Claire, but impatient with what he sees as her “uselessness.” He’s been there, done that, has the divorce papers to prove it. But he can’t seem to shake his feelings for Claire. Can Claire play for the daughter, who “listens” by putting her hands on the piano? Does Claire go back to playing or walk away forever? Crisis with Wyatt? What would push him over the edge? Was first kid unplanned? Does Claire get pregnant, making him feel trapped and/or history repeating itself? MALLERY/THE STAIRWAY TO PLOT HEAVEN A FIEND IN NEED Maureen Child Book 2 in the series, follows More than Fiends. This one is about the duster, Cassidy Burke, still dealing with her newfound powers. It’s a month after the first one, almost Halloween and for the first time, she knows that there really are demons and other things out there, bumping in the night! She’s going to have to deal with a Faery. One that has a problem that I don’t know yet.. The Faery is a Sylvester Stallone type. Big and burly. Faeries are human sized. Pixies are short people. and kind of crabby. The Faery is in trouble with a demon. Or connected to one in some way that will cause problems. (THE FOLLOWING ARE NOTES I MADE WHEN SUSAN AND I TALKED ABOUT THIS SIX MONTHS AGO!! SHOULD HAVE BEEN MORE CLEAR, OBVIOUSLY, BUT MAYBE SOMETHING HERE WE CAN TWEAK) Three times sleeping with her gives her his powers. He’s already done it twice. He needs help. Faery has to be around heroine to be safe. Devlin, heroine’s demon boyfriend, sleeps with someone else. Logan, heroine’s ex and father of her daughter, buys house across the street. Heroine sleeps with Logan after catching Devlin with another woman Villain is ancient female demon. Heroine must do battle with villainess. Faery dies to save her? Gives heroine his power? Does heroine get communication with all the women? (power source) At end, he’s a ghost faery? MALLERY/THE STAIRWAY TO PLOT HEAVEN Men of Mercy Medical Teresa Southwick Series Overview: Mercy Medical Center, Las Vegas, is a fictitious Level I trauma hospital ten minutes from the glitz and glamour of The Strip. The men of Mercy Medical are everyday heroes wounded in mind, body and spirit who excel in their work, but not so much in love. Gabe Thorne can build a state-of the-art hospital, but his harrowing past leaves no room in his soul for hope until meeting OB/GYN Dr. Rebecca Hamilton whose specialty is life. Lt. Col. Joe Morgan believes anyone who doesn’t want to fly is crazy and nurse Kate Carpenter thinks challenging gravity on a regular basis requires therapy, drugs--or both. When he comes home from the trauma of war and flies helicopters for Mercy Medical, the baby they conceived before he went MIA further tests their already strained relationship. Dr. Mitch Tenney is a brilliant trauma specialist who cheats death every day. But his straightforward manner and intolerance for stupidity put his ER job in jeopardy unless he completes a mandated program with executive coach Samantha Ryan. This is the opportunity she’s worked for to prove herself and find the success that will earn the respect and love of her family. But wounded, world-weary Mitch turns out to be the challenge threatening her dream.
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